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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

China rattles a fairly blunt saber

November 2, 2007

CanWest News Service; Reuters
The Vancouver Province

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

OTTAWA -- China is threatening unspecified "consequences" after
Gov.-Gen. Michaelle Jean and Prime Minister Stephen Harper met publicly
yesterday with the Dalai Lama.

Sun Lushan, spokesman for the People's Republic of China's Ottawa
embassy, yesterday called on Canada to stop "supporting and conniving
with the separatist activities of the Tibet independence forces."

"It is a blatant interference in China's internal affairs and has
severely hurt the feelings of the Chinese people and will gravely
undermine the relationship between China and Canada," Lushan said. "This
is quite serious and there must be some consequences, an impact, on our
relationship."

Lushan refused to specify what consequences the Chinese government had
in mind, but dismissed any negative impact on the two countries' trading
relationship. He also said he hoped that no link would be made to the
2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, because "politics and sports should not
be mixed."

China views the exiled, 72-year-old Buddhist monk as a Tibetan separatist.

A Conservative senator, Consiglio Di Nino, predicted last week the
Chinese would "huff and puff" a lot about the meeting but it would not
have any long-term consequences.

This was echoed by Liberal MP Larry Bagnell, spokesman for the
Parliamentary Friends of Tibet, who also met with the Dalai Lama
yesterday. Bagnell said the fact that Lushan -- a counsellor, not the
Chinese ambassador -- spoke for China indicated it was mostly rhetoric.

The Dalai Lama, who was granted honorary Canadian citizenship in June,
met Harper for about 40 minutes in Harper's Centre Block office -- the
first public meeting between a prime minister and the Dalai Lama.

The Dalai Lama touted Harper as a strong defender of human rights while
expressing reservations about Canada's combat role in Afghanistan,
saying the war-torn country could only be restored by non-violent means.

"I always believe non-violence is the best way to solve problems. Using
violence, counter-violence, sometimes it creates more complications," he
said. He reminded reporters he had also expressed his reservations about
the war in Iraq when he met Oct. 18 with U.S. President George W. Bush.

The Dalai Lama is set to meet the three opposition party leaders today
-- in a hotel.

CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665   ctcoffice@tibet.ca
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